Pride and Prejudice

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The oldest of the Bennet sisters, Jane seems almost too good to be true: beautiful, sweet-tempered, and modest. Her sole fault is that she refuses to think badly of anyone. She always looks on the bright side and is quick to defend someone when Elizabeth suspects them of having shortcomings.

Jane Bennet Quotes in Pride and Prejudice

The Pride and Prejudice quotes below are all either spoken by Jane Bennet or refer to Jane Bennet. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
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). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the Penguin Classics edition of Pride and Prejudice published in 2002.
Chapter 4 Quotes
Oh! you are a great deal too apt, you know, to like people in general. You never see a fault in anybody. All the world are good and agreeable in your eyes. I never heard you speak ill of a human being in your life.
Related Characters: Elizabeth (Eliza, Lizzy) Bennet (speaker), Jane Bennet
Page Number: 16
Explanation and Analysis:

As Jane and Elizabeth debrief on their experiences at the ball, Jane expresses surprise that Mr. Bingley would have paid her so much attention. Elizabeth exclaims that it is natural for him to do so, given all Jane's gifts. Elizabeth then criticizes Bingley's sisters, while Jane is reluctant to say anything bad about them. Here Elizabeth makes a more general statement about Jane's willingness to see the positive in everyone, and to fail to criticize - not because she is holding her tongue, but because she really is so slow to judgment. Elizabeth is implicitly contrasting Jane with her own tendency to judge others, a tendency shared by many in their community. 

In Austen's work, families often are composed of quite different elements, their members possessing distinct character traits, rather than being joined under a shared ethos. The differences between Jane and Elizabeth (not to mention the other Bennets) give Austen the opportunity to explore the intricacies of family life but also to develop some of her major interests, including that of prejudice, since each character reacts so differently to it.

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Chapter 33 Quotes
If his own vanity, however, did not mislead him, he was the cause, his pride and caprice were the cause, of all that Jane had suffered, and still continued to suffer. He had ruined for a while every hope of happiness for the most affectionate, generous heart in the world; and no one could say how lasting an evil he might have inflicted.
Related Characters: Elizabeth (Eliza, Lizzy) Bennet, Fitzwilliam Darcy, Jane Bennet
Page Number: 182
Explanation and Analysis:

Speaking with Colonel Fitzwilliams, Elizabeth learns that Darcy - a friend of his - has intervened to stop Bingley from making an "impudent marriage." Elizabeth realizes that he must be talking about Bingley's relationship with her sister Jane. She is appalled, and immediately takes the opportunity to condemn Darcy with all her judgment. She particularly criticizes his pride, as she assumes that he considers the Bennet girls too lowly and unworthy for a gentleman like himself and his friend Bingley. 

Although this understanding of marriage was relatively common at the time, Elizabeth takes a quite different opinion. She argues internally that Jane's character is so unblemished that anyone would be lucky to marry her, regardless of his fortune. It is Jane's unquestionable goodness that makes Darcy's actions such a crime in Elizabeth's eyes (not to mention her sense of pride in response to the notion that her family is more unworthy than others). Darcy sinks even lower in her estimation, even as she decides not to try to confirm her assumption by talking to Fitzwilliam.

Chapter 55 Quotes
in spite of his being a lover, Elizabeth really believed all his expectations of felicity to be rationally founded, because they had for basis the excellent understanding, and super-excellent disposition of Jane, and a general similarity of feeling and taste between her and himself.
Related Characters: Elizabeth (Eliza, Lizzy) Bennet, Jane Bennet, Charles Bingley
Page Number: 328
Explanation and Analysis:

Bingley has proposed marriage to Jane, and Elizabeth is overjoyed. Here she shares some of what she has learned about what is important to her in marriage and in family life, lessons that she has developed over the course of the novel. Elizabeth doesn't share the opinion of some, like Lady Catherine, who believe marriage to be a confirmation of undeniable class differences, and therefore also a chance to look down on those who have less attractive options. Nor does she share her mother's view, that marriage is the chance to claw one's way up the social ladder and then grow smug about one's success.

However, Elizabeth is also wary of the opposite understanding of marriage, such as Lydia's heady, irrational escape based on her feelings for Wickham. Instead, Elizabeth promotes a mix of reason and love. Indeed, she believes that love can be even stronger when founded on real, true facts, principles of character and personality. Elizabeth's enumeration of the reasons Jane and Bingley may be happy might sound a bit cold to a modern reader; but her balanced, rational approach shows her maturity in a world in which marriage is probably the most important choice, and the freest one, that a young lady can make. 

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Jane Bennet Character Timeline in Pride and Prejudice

The timeline below shows where the character Jane Bennet appears in Pride and Prejudice. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 3
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...but proud and aloof. Bingley makes friends with everyone, dancing every dance, including several with Jane, which makes the Bennets very happy. (full context)
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Elizabeth overhears Bingley tell Darcy that Jane is the most beautiful girl he's ever seen. Bingley demands that Darcy find someone to... (full context)
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...home, Mrs. Bennet regales her husband with an abundance of details. She is excited for Jane and convinced of Bingley's interest in her, and detests Darcy for his attitude about Elizabeth. (full context)
Chapter 4
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Upstairs, Jane and Elizabeth talk more openly about their admiration for Bingley's looks, humor, and manners. Jane... (full context)
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...aloof that he offends people. After the ball, Bingley was delighted with the locals (especially Jane) but Darcy considered them plain and uninteresting. (full context)
Chapter 5
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Everyone agrees that Bingley liked Jane. The conversation quickly shifts to Darcy. Apparently he offended everyone who tried to speak with... (full context)
Chapter 6
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Bingley's sisters soon start exchanging visits with Jane and Elizabeth. Elizabeth suspects they are only nice to Jane because of Bingley, whose admiration... (full context)
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Suspecting that Jane is falling in love, Elizabeth admires her sister's composure. She privately mentions it to Charlotte... (full context)
Chapter 7
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A letter arrives to Jane from Caroline Bingley inviting her to visit. Mrs. Bennet schemes to send Jane on horseback,... (full context)
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The next morning, Jane sends Elizabeth a letter explaining that she caught a bad cold in the storm. Elizabeth... (full context)
Chapter 8
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...Elizabeth accepts, but sees through, the empty concern that Mrs. Hurst and Caroline show for Jane. Still, she is grateful to Bingley for his sincere interest in Jane. (full context)
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...and Caroline criticize her looks, manners, and judgment. Mrs. Hurst says she does really like Jane, but that her family situation—having few connections and no money—will block her hopes of making... (full context)
Chapter 9
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Elizabeth sends home a note requesting that her mother come and visit Jane. Mrs. Bennet arrives with Lydia and, not wishing Jane to leave Bingley's company, declares that... (full context)
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In conversation, Mrs. Bennet, seeking to raise Jane's status, tries to impress Bingley about her family and their situation in the country. Darcy... (full context)
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...to give a ball at Netherfield. Bingley says he hasn't forgotten but will wait until Jane recovers. (full context)
Chapter 11
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That evening, Jane is well enough to join the group. Bingley dotes on her and talks to no... (full context)
Chapter 12
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Elizabeth and Jane write to Mrs. Bennet to send their carriage to take them home. Mrs. Bennet, still... (full context)
Chapter 15
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...their inheritance. He privately tells Mrs. Bennet his intentions, and she redirects his target from Jane, whom she hopes will marry Bingley, to Elizabeth. Mr. Collins obligingly agrees to shift his... (full context)
Chapter 17
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The next day, Elizabeth tells Jane what she learned. Jane cannot believe that Darcy could be so blameworthy and that there... (full context)
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...visit Longbourn with an invitation to a ball at Netherfield. Lydia and Kitty are overjoyed. Jane is excited to see Bingley, while Elizabeth looks forward to dancing with Wickham, though Mr.... (full context)
Chapter 18
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...the contrary, Wickham treated Darcy terribly and now Darcy has nothing to do with him. Jane, who has been speaking to Bingley, tells Elizabeth the same story: the fault, whatever it... (full context)
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...to Darcy and later pontificates to the whole assembly. Darcy overhears Mrs. Bennet talking about Jane and Bingley like they're already married. Mary insists on playing the piano, and does so... (full context)
Chapter 20
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Outraged, Mrs. Bennet tries to find support from anyone else: Jane, who keeps out of it, and then Charlotte Lucas, who has just arrived to visit.... (full context)
Chapter 21
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A letter from Caroline Bingley arrives for Jane, who reads it in distress. Upstairs, Jane shares the contents of the letter with Elizabeth.... (full context)
Chapter 23
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Meanwhile, Jane and Elizabeth start to worry because Bingley has not written. Jane writes to Caroline. Elizabeth... (full context)
Chapter 24
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...Bingley will certainly be gone for awhile and everyone is delighted with Darcy's sister, Georgiana. Jane tries to put on a brave face, telling Elizabeth that Bingley has not wronged her... (full context)
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...friend determine his affections. She cites him and Charlotte as examples of human inconsistency. But Jane tells Elizabeth she judges them too harshly. (full context)
Chapter 25
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...Mr. Gardiner is a tradesman in London. Mrs. Gardiner is intelligent and extremely well-liked by Jane and Elizabeth. (full context)
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After listening sympathetically to Mrs. Bennet's outpouring of complaints, Mrs. Gardiner speaks with Elizabeth about Jane's situation. Elizabeth confirms that Jane was very much in love and swears that Bingley's departure... (full context)
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Mrs. Gardiner proposes that Jane come stay with them in London to help her recovery. While Mrs. Gardiner promises that... (full context)
Chapter 26
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Jane travels with the Gardiners to London and writes a letter to Elizabeth. She says that... (full context)
Chapter 27
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...Elizabeth go to visit Charlotte, stopping along the way in London to check up on Jane. Speaking privately with Elizabeth, Mrs. Gardiner confirms that Jane feels dejected, but she thinks that... (full context)
Chapter 30
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...usual reserve. Conversation is sparse. Darcy seems uncomfortable when Elizabeth asks if he ever sees Jane in London, but the moment passes. (full context)
Chapter 33
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...an "imprudent marriage." Elizabeth realizes that Fitzwilliam is unknowingly referencing a story about Bingley and Jane, and is appalled to realize that Darcy ruined Jane's chances with Bingley. Darcy, she thinks,... (full context)
Chapter 34
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Darcy is astonished and demands an explanation. Elizabeth blasts him for insulting her, for ruining Jane's happiness forever, and for robbing Wickham of his chances in life. (full context)
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Darcy stands by his decision to break up Bingley and Jane. He is sarcastic about Wickham's misfortunes. And he tells Elizabeth that he was only being... (full context)
Chapter 35
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...her a letter of explanation. In the letter, Darcy answers Elizabeth's charges of misconduct toward Jane and Wickham. He knew that Bingley was in love with Jane, but he detected no... (full context)
Chapter 36
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Elizabeth also rereads the part of the letter about Jane, and realizes that she can't blame Darcy for intervening: Jane was reserved, as Charlotte had... (full context)
Chapter 38
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Elizabeth arrives in London to visit with the Gardiners before returning to Longbourn with Jane. Though desperate to share her news about Darcy, she is apprehensive that the news about... (full context)
Chapter 39
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On their way to Longbourn, Elizabeth and Jane are met by Kitty and Lydia, who talk constantly about the soldiers. Lydia tells them... (full context)
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When they arrive home, Mr. Bennet is glad to see Elizabeth and Jane, Mrs. Bennet wants to hear about the latest fashions, and Kitty and Lydia want to... (full context)
Chapter 40
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Later, Elizabeth tells Jane how Darcy proposed to her and also shares the part of Darcy's letter about Wickham.... (full context)
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Elizabeth asks for Jane's advice: should they publicize Wickham's faults? They agree not to, for the sake of Darcy... (full context)
Chapter 44
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...to see Elizabeth, and asks questions that lead Elizabeth to suspect he might still love Jane. Darcy and Georgiana invite Elizabeth and the Gardiners to Pemberley for dinner the next evening. (full context)
Chapter 46
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At her inn, Elizabeth receives two awful letters from Jane. The first contains the shocking news that Lydia had run off with Wickham to get... (full context)
Chapter 47
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In the carriage, Mr. Gardiner wonders if Jane might be right in hoping for the best: Wickham knows Lydia has no money and... (full context)
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Elizabeth and Jane dissect the situation. They are relieved that apparently Lydia did think she was getting married,... (full context)
Chapter 49
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...for Lydia, he says. The Bennets all agree that Lydia and Wickham must marry, but Jane and Elizabeth wonder how they can ever repay Mr. Gardiner. (full context)
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Jane and Elizabeth share the news with Mrs. Bennet, who is overjoyed, instantly forgetting Lydia's disgrace.... (full context)
Chapter 50
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...Northern England and that Lydia hopes they can visit Longbourn on their way. Elizabeth and Jane convince Mr. Bennet, who wants nothing to do with Lydia or Wickham, to let the... (full context)
Chapter 53
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...at Pemberley, and Elizabeth doubts he has returned for her. Bingley, however, warms up to Jane as the initial awkwardness subsides. Mrs. Bennet reminds Bingley about having left the neighborhood so... (full context)
Chapter 54
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At the dinner party, Bingley decides to take the seat next to Jane—just as he used to. Watching them, Elizabeth is sure that Bingley will soon propose. (full context)
Chapter 55
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Bingley visits again, this time alone. Mrs. Bennet, expecting a proposal, awkwardly clears everyone but Jane from the room. Nothing happens. The next morning, Bingley returns to shoot with Mr. Bennet.... (full context)
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Overjoyed, Jane goes upstairs to tell her mother. Bingley and Elizabeth greet each other as brother and... (full context)
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Bingley tells Jane that he didn't know she was in London, but—to Elizabeth's relief—he leaves Darcy out of... (full context)
Chapter 56
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Lady Catherine gets to the point: she knows of Jane's engagement; she also knows that Elizabeth has tricked her nephew, Darcy, into proposing as well.... (full context)
Chapter 58
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Darcy explains that he told Bingley the truth about Jane and advised him to return to Netherfield. Bingley was angry about being deceived while Jane... (full context)
Chapter 59
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That night, Elizabeth tells Jane everything. Jane thinks Elizabeth is joking. After all, doesn't Elizabeth hate Darcy? Elizabeth explains how... (full context)
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...of shock, Mrs. Bennet joyfully stutters that Elizabeth will be genteel and rich—even richer than Jane! Elizabeth fears that her mother will continue to embarrass Darcy, but Mrs. Bennet, because she's... (full context)
Chapter 61
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A year later, Jane and Bingley move into an estate near Elizabeth and Darcy at Pemberley. Mrs. Bennet, extremely... (full context)